Bacteria need dedicated systems that allow appropriate adaptation to the perpetual changes in their environments. In Bacillus subtilis, two HtrA-like proteases, HtrA and HtrB, play critical roles in the cellular response to secretion and heat stresses. Transcription of these genes is induced by the high-level production of a secreted protein or by a temperature upshift. The CssR-CssS two-component regulatory system plays an essential role in this transcriptional activation. Transcription of the cssRS operon is autoregulated and can be induced by secretion stress, by the absence of either HtrA or HtrB, and by heat stress in a HtrA null mutant strain. Two start sites are used for cssRS transcription, only one of which is responsive to heat and secretion stress. The divergently transcribed htrB and cssRS genes share a regulatory region through which their secretion and heat stress-induced expression is linked. This study shows that CssRS-regulated genes represent a novel class of heat-inducible genes, which is referred to as class V and currently includes two genes: htrA and htrB.
- 2-COMPONENT SIGNAL-TRANSDUCTION
- SHOCK REGULON